Guest Editorial: Bloody Sunday - Montgomery Alabama news.

Guest Editorial: Bloody Sunday

45 years ago this Sunday, 600 civil rights marchers were attacked by state and local police as they tried to cross the Edmund Pettus Bridge in Selma en route to Montgomery, an event which later led to the passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

As a middle aged, white, male, I probably don't have the best insight into Bloody Sunday.

Which is why I asked the question  "What is the significance… the importance… the relevance of Bloody Sunday, to youth and young adults today?"   The responses I got from the admittedly small sampling of young folks I asked were not encouraging.

Answers ranged from only knowing the U2 song by that title, to knowing the historical facts about Bloody Sunday, but not being particularly interested.  It suggests the troubling possibility that "the movement", in general, has lost its significance for the millennial generation.

If that is the case, why is it so?   Is the history of the Civil Rights struggle not being taught in "American History"?  Or in "Alabama History"?  Or even during Black History Month?  Or has enough time passed that the event is losing its significance to young people today?  I hope not.

If we are to commemorate Bloody Sunday, let's be sure we're making it more than a just poignant reminder to those of us old enough to remember it.   Let's find ways to make it relevant to young people, because, whether they appreciate or not, Generation Y is standing on the shoulders of those 600 marchers in Selma.

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